Look. There were more flames popping out on last night's Idol than during a late '80s Motley Crue stadium show when they'd bust out "Home Sweet Home." And, I love it.
Ugly Betty's nephew is all grown up and he's Danny Noriega. Why do I love Danny? Because I barely ever see 30 year-olds as comfortable in their own skins as this kid is in his. And he's already given us the head snap, and this week, when talking to Simon, he gave us "ish". He must stay. Simply, he makes the show more watchable.
Not quite rushing out of the closet, David Hernandez did at least discuss fashion choices in his clip where he talked about being a child gymnast. He then belted the shit out of "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" with some energy while still trying to walk the line without being too flamboyant. (You know, not as flamboyant as say, a go-go dancer would be.) I still like him and I still think he's a lot cuter than dimwit Luke Menard. Again, Menard with those vacant, closely-set eyes and that nasally voice. This dude defined irony for the evening because he's definitely NOT in the evening's Queen club, even though he tried to sing "Killer Queen."
As for the Jackass section last night, I actually thought Chikezie sang pretty well and his joking with Simon about rewearing of clothing was kinda funny, not jackassy. He still needs help with that damn neckfurter, though. But Robbie Karaoke was jackass incarnate. You know, I'd wondered last week why he always had the damn bandana on. Then, last night, when it came off, I knew why. But, it then leapt a step higher this morning when I learned that it's not just ugly-ass ratnest Brett Michaels hair. TMZ has provided the full dirt that really makes sense. And this rug fucker dares wonder why he has "authenticity" problems? He even broke out the wallet chain, but he still can't hide his boy band hand movements onstage and then he prances around with a bad attitude and mediocre voice and gets owned by the much uglier but much better singer David Cook.
Speaking of Cook, I disagree with Simon about his intro package. A word nerd. Okay, I can go with that. Then he did alright on "All Right Now." And then he couldn't keep his Mr. Peanut-head mouth shut and spouted off a little petulantly to Simon. Seriously. Give this dude a monocle, cane and top hat and he could have a career in famous legume impersonation. He's got a voice that really is suitable for the radio. But so's his face. And unlike Robbie who can blame the wig maker, he's got no excuse for that hair. So he ends up as jackass number two of the night.
How quickly did the koala love disappear last night? Johns sang "Go Your Own Way" and I couldn't believe it that Randy didn't even break out "pitchy" on his ass. But he couldn't go so far as to overpraise him, either, because this was one of the worst performances from the guys this season. Excellent. Excellent stuff.
Poor Jason Castro also suffered a let down. I have to say, I really liked his promo package, though, because he essentially refused to say a single thing about himself but did in a cute and sly way so that he didn't come off as a prima donna. Then he sang an Andy Gibb song, which Simon rightly criticized as being schmaltzy. But, I do also think they kicked him a little too hard. If I'm being honest, I don't think his voice is all that good. But he's chill and he kind of has a Jack Johnson-Ben Harper thing working for him musically that could actually be successful outside this show.
So that leaves us with little David Archuleta. He did "Imagine" and I imagine that Nigel nearly creamed himself just thinking about the profits he's going to pocket from this kid. I admitted before that despite it all, I like him, and I still do. And yet my nasty side is now salivating to see how he's going to react when he eventually has a less-than-stellar performance and Simon tells him so. He's all bashful appreciation right now, but his opening clip didn't do him any favors by making it abundantly apparent to us that everyone around this show has been aware of -- and waiting for -- this kid to be on the show since season one. Somewhere, behind the curtain, there's a stage mother pulling the marionette strings and she'd probably rival Joan Crawford. And over the long weeks, David A will eventually stumble slightly, and it'll be frame-by-frame inspection/dissection of his every single reaction to it that'll give his haters much glee. In the meantime, though, even those who like him, like me, can take glee in how positively spastic-denial bonkers his hardcore fans get when someone mentions his, uh, proclivities. (shades of Claymates already.) You think they hate that? Just wait until someone points out that he also bears a passing resemblance to Chris Kattan's Mr. Peepers. Or, Kattan's Mango. (Kind of a double-whammy with that one, huh?)
And, I realize I've forgotten someone. I guess that says it all, then. So, until next week, flame on, triple Ds. Flame on.